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Filip Mirkovic becomes Pitt’s all-time assists leader, sparking a late scoring surge to overpower Virginia Tech, 3-1,

Pitt men's soccer
Photo courtesy Pitt Athletics

FINAL: Pitt 3, Virginia Tech 1

Match Stats

Pitt exploded for three late second half goals to turn the match around, overpowering Virginia Tech, 3-1, in the final 12 minutes of the match at Ambrose Urbanic Field on Friday night.

Jackson Gilman, Raphael Cilli and Guilherme Feitosa each scored for Pitt, while goalkeeper Cabrel Carter made eight saves to secure an important second ACC win of the season, allowing the Panthers (4-3-3, 2-1-2 ACC) to jump the second place Hokies in the standings.  Midfielder Filip Mirkovic assisted on Gilman’s equalizer, becoming the program’s lone all-time assist leader with 27, and his eight this season.


For the first 70 minutes of the match, everything was going smoothly for the visiting Hokies, who held a 7-1 shots on frame edge, and constantly found ways to pressure Carter, especially on the counter from failed Pitt passes and crosses.

While Pitt was able to get forward, they were unable to connect on numerous crosses from the width and through balls behind defenders were misconnecting with forwards.

Virginia Tech took the lead in the 23rd minute, catching the Panthers pushed too far up on a counter that ended on a long pass over the top as Declan Quill hit Mayola Kinyua in stride getting behind the last Pitt defender.  Kinyua beat Carter with a clinical finish as he entered the box.

Pitt started to get closer starting in the 65th minute, as a pair of crosses for Luis Sahmkow and Feitosa resulted in headers that just missed the frame.

Following a fabulous strike attempt by Albert Thorsen, but saved by Hokies keeper Timi Adams, the Panthers finally found the equalizer on a set piece lined up by its most reliable playmaker, Filip Mirkovic.

Mirkovic delivered the ball for the near post, hooking up with team captain, sophomore defender Jackson Gilman, who buried his header into right side of goal.

It was a history making assist for Mirkovic.

The goal awakened the Panthers’ attack.

Moments later, in the 81st minute, after a 50/50 ball on the edge of the box saw the ball bounce his way, Raphael Cilli found room to advance unchallenged inside the right side of the box, taking a touch, then driving a powerful shot Adams attempted to retrieve, but couldn’t stop.

With a 2-1 lead, and tons of momentum, the Panthers kept coming.

After two powerful goals, the Panthers switched things up a bit to put an exclamation point on the match with a display of quick thinking and clever skill.

In the 86th minute, junior midfielder Guilherme Feitosa’s brilliant back heel to convert Eben McIntyre’s quick cross emanating from the left end line gave the Panthers a 3-1 lead.

It was the first goal of season for the Brazilian, as the Panthers completed its three goal explosion in an eight minute span.

Next up for the Panthers, they’ll travel to Charlottesville, VA, next Friday to take on Virginia, who tied Boston College on Friday.

The Panthers (8 points) are now in sole possession of second place in the Coastal Division, as they trail first place Notre Dame (3-0-1, 10 pts).

John Krysinsky has covered soccer and other sports for many years for various publications and media outlets. He is also author of 'Miracle on the Mon' -- a book about the Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC, which chronicles the club, particularly the early years of Highmark Stadium with the narrative leading up to and centered around a remarkable match that helped provide a spark for the franchise. John has covered sports for Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, DK Pittsburgh Sports, Pittsburgh Sports Report, has served as color commentator on Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC broadcasts, and worked with OPTA Stats and broadcast teams for US Open Cup and International Champions Cup matches held in the US. Krysinsky also served as the Head Men’s Soccer Coach at his alma mater, Point Park University, where he led the Pioneers to the first-ever winning seasons and playoff berths (1996-98); head coach of North Catholic boys (2007-08), associate head coach of Shady Side Academy boys (2009-2014).

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Glory on the Grass

Riverhounds MF Kenardo Forbes

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